The Six Day London organisers have announced the final rider start list for the 16 teams that will compete on the Lee Valley VeloPark velodrome from 25-30 October. After an absence of six day racing in the British capital for several decades, the event was held to great success last year with Madison Sports Group CEO Mark Darbon explaining that he believes the event will be bigger and better for year two.
"Outside of a world championship or Olympic Games, there cannot be many stronger fields put together on the track, with nine former world champions, a current Olympic Champion, last year's winners and some of the best six day riders around," said Darbon. "Add to that a really strong women’s field with two of our GB gold medallists and you can start to see why the crowds are flocking to Six Day. And the event wouldn’t be complete without the sprinters who bring bags of entertainment to the proceedings as well as explosive racing."
Headlining the start list is the British team of Mark Cavendish and Bradley Wiggins with the later making his penultimate appearance as a professional cyclist before one final race at the Zesdaagse Vlaanderen-Gent (Six Days of Ghent) in November. The duo teamed up in London earlier this year, winning the Madison World title in March, eight year's on from their 2008 Manchester Madison success.
Defending champion Kenny De Ketele and Moreno De Pauw will return to London for the six day.
Held simultaneously will be a three-day women's omnium that features British cyclist Katie Archibald and Elinor Barker.
2016 Six Day London teams - men
1 - Mark Cavendish & Sir Bradley Wiggins (GBr)
2 - Kenny de Ketele & Moreno de Pauw (Bel)
3 - Yoeri Havik & Wim Stroetinga (Ned)
4 - Leif Lampater & Marcel Kalz (Ger)
5 - Albert Torres & Sebastian Mora Vedri (Esp)
6 - Morgan Kneisky & Benjamin Thomas (Fra)
7 - Marc Hester & Jesper Morkov (Den)
8 - Andreas Muller & Andreas Graf (Aut)
9 - Ollie Wood & Jon Dibben (GBr)
10 - Cameron Meyer & Callum Scotson (Aus)
11 - Alex Buttazzoni & Fracesco Lamon (Ita)
12 - Casper Pederson & Alex Rasmussen (Den)
13 - Jens Mouris & Pim Ligthart (Ned)
14 - Christian Grasmann & Max Beyer (Ger)
15 - Tristan Marguet & Claudio Imhoff (Sui)
16 - Andy Tennant & Chris Latham (GBr)
Kenny De Ketele and Moreno De Pauw in the spotlight after their 2015 Six Day London victory (Getty Images Sport)
Japan Cup final race of 2016 season for Orica-BikeExchange
Australian WorldTour team Orica-BikeExchange will bring its most successful season yet to a close this weekend at the Japan Cup with a small five-man team to compete in the 1.HC race. The quintet will also line up in Saturday's criterium before Sunday's road race in what will be Christian Meier's last appearance as a professional cyclist.
Paris-Roubaix champion Mat Hayman adds experience to a young squad that includes stagiaire Nick Schultz and 21-year-old Robert Power who continues his comeback following his recovery from rare bone marrow edema. Dane Chris Juul-Jensen will round out the squad with Matt Wilson to direct the team from the car.
"These two races are traditionally fast finishes. We don't have a sprinter in the team so we will look to be aggressive and try to shake up the racing to create an opportunity," Wilson said. "It's going to be a challenge given the parcours, but all of the team are motivated for the trip to Japan and to walk away from our final race of the season with a victory."
Orica-BikeExchange are also competing this week at the Abu Dhabi Tour, starting Wednesday October 20 and concluding Sunday.
Orica-BikeExchange for the 2016 Japan Cup: Mathew Hayman, Chris Juul-Jensen, Christian Meier, Robert Power and Nick Schultz.
Mat Hayman (Australia) at the World Championships (Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
Ryan Bayley headlines Cycling Australia 2016 Hall of Fame inductees
Two-time Athens 2004 Olympic Games gold medallist Ryan Bayley is one of six new Hall of Fame inductees announced by Cycling Australia ahead of the November 18 ceremony in Australia. Two-time Women's World Cup overall winner Oenone Wood has also been inducted by Cycling Australia.
"It's cool to be recognised for what you've done, and when you win stuff back then it's nice to be put up on the wall with other impressive athletes," said Bayley who also won four Commonwealth Games gold medals, and 2001 Keirin world title. "Some days it (Athens) seriously feels like it was a couple of weeks ago, other days it feels like a century ago."
Bayley retired from the sport in 2009 and currently works at a bike shop in Brisbane.
Wood, a bronze medallist from the 2005 World Championships, also won numerous national titles during her career along with helping teammate Sara Carrigan to the 2004 Olympic Games gold medal.
"I am very humbled to be included in the CA Hall of Fame. I have been very fortunate to have had the opportunity to participate in cycling at the elite level and my involvement in the cycling community has certainly shaped my life," said the now Spain based Wood.
Mountain biker Mary Grigson has been rewarded for her exploits on the bike that included World Cup wins, Commonwealth Games bronze medal and the 24-hour MTB crown in 2001. Para-cyclist Chris Scott, who has won six Paralympic gold medals, is the fourth living cyclist to be inducted.
85-year-old Iris Dixon and Alf Goullet, honoured posthumously, are the other riders to be inducted for 2016.
"Cycling Australia is proud to present a superbly talented and thoroughly deserving class of 2016," said CEO Nicholas Green. "I congratulate all six athletes and welcome them into the distinguished company that is the Hall of Fame."
CCC Sprandi Polkowice sign Jan Tratnik on two-year deal
One time QuickStep rider Jan Tratnik has inked a two-year deal with Pro-Continental squad CCC Sprandi Polkowice following three season with the Continental Amplatz - BMC squad. The 26-year-old won the Slovenian road race title in June having also enjoyed home soil success at the UCI 2.2 Tour de Slovaquie with a stage win, and the mountains classification at the UCI 2.1 Tour de Slovénie.
"Jan Tratnik is a very versatile rider, who has proven that he can time trial, can cope with being the team leader in stage races and is capable of winning one-day events," sports director Piotr Wadecki said. "He has huge potential. He is the European champion, achieved a lot in the younger categories and we will do everything we can to provide him with the best support, so he can develop and use his talent to the fullest.
"It's an important addition also from a marketing standpoint. Our main sponsor, CCC, has multiple stores in Slovenia and Jan Tratnik is the National champion."
Tratnik also expressed his pleasure to be joining the team and the increased opportunity to race at a higher level.
"When I came in contact with Piotr Wadecki and he told me that the team is interested in me, I didn't hesitate. It’s one of the best Pro Continental teams, well organized, with really good race calendar," Tratnik said. "Team works at the high level and I believe that here I can get great support to improve and gain a lot of experiences in the biggest races. My goal for 2017 is to do everything what is best for the team and try to bring some great results."